Speakers Bureau: Speaking for the Children

Lincoln Public Schools is the second largest public school district in Nebraska, serving over 42,000 students from early childhood and kindergarten through senior year in high school—and at 39 elementary schools, twelve middle schools, six high schools and numerous programs and focus programs. 

In addition to Superintendent Steve Joel, members of the LPS Speaker’s Bureau offer a broad variety of voices in all aspects of public education in the School District, telling the fascinating story of our schools:  addressing the School District’s master facility plan, the value of school athletics, the School District budget, what we want students to learn and how we know they are learning it, and much more.

Speakers tailor their time and topics to the needs of your group, whether it is a community organization, a business or a neighborhood group.  There is no fee for this service, but we suggest advance notice.

Please call us today—and invite us to speak for the children.

Contact Mary Kay Roth, Director, Communications for Lincoln Public Schools
Phone: 402-436-1609—Email: mkroth@lps.org

President, Lincoln Public Schools Board of Education

  • The Lincoln Board of Education is working for you
  • The value of public education to our community

Additional members of the Lincoln Board of Education are also available.
For information about our board of education, president and members 
please visit our Board of Education information page.

Matt Larson, Interim Assistant to the Superintendent for Instruction

  • Teaching and learning with LPS students
  • Challenges in public education
  • General Instruction at LPS

Liz Standish, Associate Superintendent for Business Affairs

  • School Finance 101
  • Lincoln Public Schools Budget
  • Lincoln Public Schools: Good stewards of our tax money
  • General topics on business and finance

Eric Weber, Associate Superintendent for Human Resources

  • Human Capital
  • Hiring for One-to-one Technology Environments
  • Professional Learning Communities

John Neal, Assistant Superintendent for General Administration and Governmental Relations

  • Lobbying: Why a political subdivision needs one
  • Favorite school district statistics
  • Legislative issues for public education
  • Community Learning Centers
  • Athletics
  • TeamMates
  • Pet Therapy

Walter Powell, Equity, Diversity and Multicultural Administrator

  • Cultural diversity with students and staff
  • Multicultural education: What does that mean?
  • Race Relations

Jenny Fundus, Director of Special Education

  • Quality Special Education Programming for students Kindergarten to age 21
  • Aligning teaching strategies and the budget to meet student needs
  • Building capacity of all educators to meet the needs of struggling learners

Takako Olson, Director of Curriculum and Instruction

  • What’s new in curriculum at Lincoln Public Schools?
  • How we develop curriculum
  • State standards

Dan Hohensee, Director, The Career Academy

  • The Career Academy opened in the fall of 2015 as a partnership with local high schools and Southeast Community College.

Pat Hunter-Pirtle, Director of Secondary Instruction

  • Middle school and high school education
  • Graduation Rate 
  • Future leaders and leadership development

Sarah Salem, Director of Continuous Improvement and Professional Learning

  • Continuous Improvement
  • Professional Learning Communities
  • Professional Learning

Cindy Schwaninger, Director of Elementary Instruction

  • Teacher Appraisal
  • Behavior Intervention Support Team (BIST) within the Positive Behavioral Interventions & Supports (PBIS) Framework
  • Elementary Education

Linda Hix, Director of Federal Programs

  • English Language Learners
  • Title I

Cara Lucas-Richt, Director of Early Childhood

  • Early Childhood Education
  • Special Education Birth to 5
  • Early Development Network

Kirk Langer, Chief Technology Officer

  • Computing Topics

Chris Haeffner, Director of Library Media Services

  • Moving a media center for renovation
  • Designing a new media center
  • Books, literature and the importance of reading

Scott Wieskamp, Director of Facilities

  • A comprehensive master plan for LPS facilities
  • Update on construction across the School District

Wendy Rau, Supervisor of Health Services

  • School nursing
  • Childhood obesity issues

Kathi Wieskamp, Director of Athletics and Student Activities

  • What’s new with LPS Athletics?
  • Budgeting for Athletics
  • The value of school athletics

Wendy Van, Foundation for Lincoln Public Schools

  • Why Community Matters when it comes to public education
  • Update on The Career Academy and other LPS community projects
  • Partnering with local schools for big impact
  • Leveraging resources for big change
  • Vital Signs: Collective Impact to support Lincoln Families

Jim Bennett, Coordinator of TeamMates

  • The power of mentoring

All of our LPS Curriculum Specialists can speak about their area:

  • Reading Language Arts
    Lisa Oltman, 402-436-1804, loltman@lps.org
  • English Language Arts
    Mindy Murphy, 402-436-1803, mmurphy@lps.org
  • Mathematics
    Josh Males, 402-436-1801, jmales@lps.org
  • Science
    James Blake, 402-436-1802, jblake@lps.org
  • Social Studies
    Jaci Kellison, 402-436-1805, jkellis@lps.org
  • Career and Tech Ed
    Cindy (Cynthia) Baum, 402-436-1819, cbaum2@lps.org
  • Health and Physical Education
    Matt Avey, 402-436-1812, mavey@lps.org
  • Gifted Education
    Joan Jacobs, 402-436-1822, jjacobs@lps.org
  • Visual Art
    Lorinda Rice, 402-436-1813, lrice@lps.org
  • World Language
    Katie Damgaard, 402-436-1814, jswanson@lps.org
  • Computer Science
    Kent Steen, 402-458-3129, ksteen@lps.org
  • Music Supervisor
    Lance Nielsen, 402-436-1631, ldniels@lps.org